Go off-centre An interesting way to play with colour and shape in the kitchen is to use an asymmetrical design like this one. The matt, bare wood units contrast with shiny, glass-fronted charcoal cabinets – and the off-centre layout is just that little bit more interesting than a symmetrical design. However, it still feels balanced, as the two tall cabinets either side of the sink are the same size. Although they have opposing designs, their matching height and width keep the space looking harmonious.
Cabinet design for kitchen This super-slim cabinet design for the kitchen shows how to do more with less when you want to keep knick-knacks organised. The tall shallow cabinet stands neatly installed on the side of a deeper cabinet, in a sliver of a corner. Even with minimal breadth, there’s room to hang keys and store recipe books. For me, the highlight is the white board – a perfect spot for a to-do list!
Interior lighting The joy of being able to actually see what you are looking for cannot be overstated. If your pantry is lacking in the lighting department, remedy the situation by adding an overhead fixture or wall sconces. Hiring an electrician is well worth the cost when it impacts your daily life for the better – and being able to easily find what you’re looking for while trying to get dinner on the table definitely counts!
Magnetic spice containers Figuring out the best place to store spices is a common struggle. Keeping frequently used spices near your stove is handy, but since spices tend to stay fresh longer when stored in a cool, dry place, the pantry is a better choice for the bulk of your spice collection. Save precious shelf space by installing a magnetic spice rack on the wall – just be sure to label the lids so you can tell what’s what at a glance.
Command centre Need to save school notices and stash incoming mail, but don’t want them cluttering up the kitchen counter? Carve out space along one wall in the pantry for a neat command centre, with a bulletin board, mail slots and hooks for keys. And you don’t need a walk-in pantry to make this work – just hang similar pieces on the back of the pantry door.
Back-of-door organiser Expand your organising possibilities with back-of-door shelving designed to hold bottles and jars one-deep. To make the most of this prime pantry space, use it to store your most frequently reached-for spices and staple ingredients. The best back-of-door shelves have guardrails (as seen here) so items don’t topple off every time you open and close the door.
Hanging racks A hanging rack can be a clever way to display frequently used items like ladles, pans, scoops and spatulas, and it can save you precious cabinet space. In the kitchen above, a scintillating show of silver cutlery presents the home cook with an array of easy-access kitchen tools. A deep alcove in the second image offers inspiration on how one can aesthetically hang pots and pans along a stylish retractable rod.
The kitchen uses birch ply for the cabinetry and storage units. “The durability of the material is increased by using a sealing coat of clear matte oil,” says Lalan. Clever designing of the storage unit allows for full use of this structure, with different sections opening up in multiple ways, such as top-hung shutters, open shelves, vertical shutters and drawers. Fluted glass, custom designed door knobs with the edges left raw and exposed, and a concrete-finish countertop infuse the plywood palette with interesting details. NOTE: Look at handles
Conceal the microwave Microwaves are still an integral part of most kitchens for reheating beverages and leftovers. Most clients prefer them out of sight rather than occupying valuable counter space. One option is to keep them hidden in a wall cabinet with a lift-up door, as shown in this photo.
Provide task lighting The primary purpose of under-cabinet lighting is to illuminate the countertop, which in turn makes food preparation easier on the eyes. That’s why it’s known as task lighting. Always install the task light toward the front of the cabinet, not toward the back. If the light is stationed closer to the back wall, it primarily highlights the backsplash tile and not the counter, defeating the purpose of the light.